‘Mad Dog’ Marcio Freire dead: Surfing superstar dies at 47 after falling into giant waves

Portugal Surfing Big Wave Awards
FILE – In this Jan. 8, 2022, file photo, Justine Dupont, from France, rides a wave before being engulfed by it and breaking her ankle during a big wave surfing session at Praia do Norte, or North Beach, in Nazare, Portugal. On Thursday, July7 2022, the World Surf League announced its 2022 Big Wave Award winners. Dupont picked two awards, the women’s Ride of the Year and the Biggest Tow, for her wave in Nazare on Jan. 8. (AP Photo/Armando Franca) Armando Franca/AP

‘Mad Dog’ Marcio Freire dead: Surfing superstar dies at 47 after falling into giant waves

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Surfing superstar “Mad Dog” Marcio Freire died Thursday at the age of 47 while surfing in the waters off Portugal.

The Brazilian was tow-in surfing on the giant waves of Nazare when he fell into the waters, according to a report.

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Emergency officials retrieved Freire via jet-skis and were able to bring him back to land, but all attempts to revive him were unsuccessful, according to the local maritime authority.

“The rescuers found that the victim was in cardio-respiratory arrest, immediately starting resuscitation [maneuvers] on the sand. After several attempts, it was not possible to reverse the situation,” per a statement by the Portugal’s National Maritime Authority.

Freire earned his nickname “Mad Dog” after defeating the massive “Jaws” wave in Hawaii in 2016, highlighted in the documentary Mad Dogs.

The 47-year-old’s death has set the world of surfing into mourning.

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“Today we lost a great man, a very good friend and a legendary surfer, Marcio Freire,” Sports photographer Fred Pompermayer said. “He was such a happy spirit, always with a smile on his face. Rest in peace my friend.”

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